(Photo by Jonathan Hardy/BYU Photo)
LAS VEGAS—Lacey Millett went 3 for 4 with two runs scored as the BYU softball team upset No. 20/23 Hawai’i 4-2 in its opening game Thursday of the Easton Desert Classic at Eller Media Stadium.
"I thought we had a total effort from the team," head coach Gordon Eakin said. "Our pitching was solid, our offense came up with timely hitting and the defense played exceptional. I was pleased with their performance today."
BYU (3-3) had seven hits in its first game of the tournament and took advantage of three Hawai’i (5-2) errors. Millett added two stolen bases to her three hits and two runs. JC Clayton, Katie Manuma, Megan Arnold and Carly Duckworth each contributed one hit to the team total. Manuma also had two of the Cougar RBI. BYU's defense came up big as well, turning its first two double plays of the season against the Rainbow Wahine. Tori Almond pitched her way to her second win of the season and had seven strikeouts in the outing.
"Tori had an excellent game and really kept the Hawaii hitters off balance," Eakin said.
BYU put the go-ahead run on third base in the top of the first inning when Marissa Bravo laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Millett around the bases. Bravo reached on a throwing error from the pitcher and Millett advanced to third. Manuma followed with a hard single to shortstop to score Millett from third and put BYU up 1-0.
Almond took the mound in the bottom of the frame and retired the first three batters she faced to hold the Cougar lead.
The Rainbow Wahine grabbed a one-run lead in the bottom of the third, taking advantage of wild pitches and a single from Jessica Iwata to go up 2-1.
BYU struck back in the top of the fourth off singles from Arnold and Duckworth and took advantage of two more Hawai’i errors to regain the lead at 3-2. Manuma scored on the single from Duckworth and Arnold crossed the plate on a sacrifice fly from Madisen Robb in the inning.
Millett led BYU to another run in the top of the fifth after singling to third base and stealing second. Manuma drove her in after singling up the middle to give BYU a 4-2 cushion.
The Cougars held Hawai’i scoreless from the fourth inning on and sealed the game with a F7-3 double play, its second of the game, to record the 4-2 upset. BYU also had a 4-6-3 double play to end the sixth inning.
BYU will play Oregon State at 3:45 p.m. PST and Louisiana Monroe at 6 p.m. PST. Friday at Stephanie Lynn Craig Park in Henderson, Nev. The Oregon State game will be available via gametracker.